How should the nurse behave with the patients struggling with the respiratory assessment?
“A holistic patient assessment was used in the clinical assessment of Jane, according to Cornforth, this includes, assessing the history, underlying medical conditions, nutritional state, pain and mobility. The history taking allows the complete success of the respiratory assessment with an overall understanding of Jane’s state of health at the time”.
Jane did not present with any underlying medical conditions, however in conditions such as acute bronchial asthma or pulmonary embolism, the respiratory rate (RR) and character would be a significant predictive guideline. The irregular RR indicates disease of the respiratory system, for example, in hypercapnia, hypoxia and metabolic acidosis there is suggestive respiratory dysfunction. Patients with Hypercapnia have an abnormally low arterial Carbon dioxide (CO2), and the respirations become shallow and slow and stages of apnoea can arise as the stimulus to breathe is missing leading to respiratory arrest.
Respiratory acidosis due to hypercapnia is also severe, and the development of acidosis worsens prognosis. Therefore, measuring the RR supports the early identification of high-risk patients.
The function of the respiratory system is to supply adequate oxygen to the tissues and to remove the waste product CO2. For example, in response to physical activity, the muscles work harder increasing the amount of oxygen and producing more CO2. Hence why this factor was considered verifying Jane had not partaken in any physical care activity to avoid errors in RR reading.